View Full Version : Need help identifying this gun

July 7, 2010, 11:38 PM
I'm new and I need help identifying my mom's gun. It's from my great-grandfather's. I am gun illiterate so bear with me. It has two large barrels and a third smaller barrel underneath where the cleaning rod would usually go. We know it's a third barrel because of the rifling but we can't find the trigger for it. It has a bunch of proof marks on it. The only number we could find on it was 11835. Does anybody know anything about this gun? Like who made it, the model, or what year it was made?

Here are some pictures we took of it.

This is down the barrel of it with the sites

This is the proof marks on the bottom of the barrels, under a wooden hand grip

This is a side view of the hammers and triggers

Proof marks on the breach

Down all 3 barrels

proof mark on the barrel

Thank you

July 7, 2010, 11:41 PM
here's two more pictures of it.

Both the sights

Where we believe the bullets for the third barrel goes.

Any information on this really cool gun would be appreciated.

July 8, 2010, 02:29 AM
Your combination gun is a type called a drilling (drei in German means three). It appears to be fairly old, being of a style and ornateness not commonly seen in later guns, and has several fine features not commonly seen on less expensive guns of this type; express sights as well as a flip-up rear peep, profuse engraving, a trap buttplate, and both an underlever and a thumb lever (one of which probably switches the piece from the shotgun barrels to the rifle barrel, or possibly covers a switch). The barrel mark says it is "Krupp gun barrel steel" (Krupp has been a major steel producer in Germany for the last 150 or so years), a fine barrel at that point in time, and probably a major selling point to differentiate it from laminated steel barrels.

It bears proofmarks from the Suhl proofhouse for black powder. My guess is that your combination gun is pre-1900. Many of these guns were assembled of parts made by several makers, so unless you find a maker's mark it would be speculation to say who made it. Other members here on TFL will have additional information, I am sure.

July 8, 2010, 03:01 AM
Very nice drilling. Krupp was also an arms manufacturer and I would say it was made by Krupp. I'm by no means an expert but thats a quality piece and probably worth a lil bit. It does appear to have some wear on the barrel latch because with it closed the thumb lever isn't centered as it should be. The under lever cocks the rifle barrel.

July 8, 2010, 06:14 AM
German, no nitro proofs that I see (and not so stated in the Krupp steel stamp) so black powder only, late 19th century would be my guess but early 20th possible, eagle crown U means it was final proofed with an over charge, crown G for the rifle barrel marked 118.35 which I believe means that it's chambered for 9.3x72R black powder, crown S for the shotgun barrels (these are often 16 gauge).

No idea of the maker but apparently unmarked guns made from supplied parts finished in a maker's shop were common.

Very lovely!

Good luck,

July 8, 2010, 07:48 AM
Typically, there should be a stamp somewhere on the body, looking like a fraction, listing the bullet weight and powdercharge of the proof loading. This was standard before 1912.
Where do you get the 118.35 = 9.3 from?

Jim Watson
July 8, 2010, 08:38 AM
Strangely enough, the old German proof system gave rifle bore diameters in gauge, just like a shotgun. So a 9.3mm is a 118.35 gauge.

That does not say anything about the chamber. Certainly 9x3x72R was popular, but there were others. If you wanted to shoot it, a chamber cast would give the dimensions to show just what it took. Better hope it IS 9.3X72R, that round is not easy to find but others are just about impossible.
It is not likely the much more powerful 9.3x74R.

The shot barrels are probably 16 gauge for the old short 65mm (2 9/16") shells.

July 8, 2010, 09:24 AM
I have seen these type firearms sell for BIG MONEY. Best to find someone who can give you an accurate appraisal. The site below will give you a written one for minimal cost. It would be well worth it when you , or your family , decided to sell it.


July 8, 2010, 10:34 AM
[We know it's a third barrel because of the rifling but we can't find the trigger for it.]

FWIW - When using drillings, the two triggers usually control the two upper barrels (shot, in your case).

It's only when the rifle sight(s) are raised that one of the triggers is connected internally/automatically to one of the upper barrel triggers.


July 8, 2010, 11:04 AM
Thank you guys!!! We have been trying to find out anything on this weapon for almost a year, and we checked the big reference books at the library and online. We did finally find the trigger for the bottom barrel after we took all the pictures of it. I will definitely let my mom all the information and let her decide. I don't want her to sell it but in the end it is up to her. Thanks again.

James K
July 8, 2010, 01:04 PM
You can try Googling "drilling gun" or "combination gun" for some dealers who specialize in those guns. You can also look at auction sites and see about what similar guns are bringing, but remember that dealers buy at one price and sell at another (it's called making money), so no dealer will give you the retail price.


July 8, 2010, 05:45 PM
btw when you move the switch to raise the back site a "block"of metal comes out in front of the right hammer and lets the right hammer fire off the third barrel.



July 8, 2010, 09:10 PM
Philly, I have nothing to add, other than to thank you for posting those excellent pictures of your great grandfather's drilling. They're great pictures of a very interesting gun!